Saturday, November 7, 2009


9/27 - 10/3: 72 miles (2 Workouts, Long 19)
10/4 - 10/10: 93 miles (2 Workouts, Long 23)
10/11 - 10/17: 134 miles (3 workouts, Long 22)
10/18 - 10/24: 85 miles (2 Workouts, Long 22)
10/25 - 10/31: 80 miles (Injured, 1 Race, Long 26)

Amazing month minues getting injured. I'm injured now - knot in the shin, but it's not too serious. Once healthy I should be able to run without end again... which is the plan. I'll update this post and add the Workouts/Wash descriptions I did. Also, I have New England XC tomorrow, healthy or not, I've got to do it.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Swan Lake Repeats 9/29

I did a tough WO at Rockefeller State Park in Sleepy Hollow, NY yesterday. Ran 10 miles around the park as a warm-up then proceeded to do .9 mile repeats (I measured it) around the longer sides of Swan Lake, rest was the short section of the lake.

10 mile warm-up
WO: 5*1450m repeats
Results: 4:45 (1:42), 4:51 (1:54), 4:47 (2:06), 4:50 (1:59), 4:45.
4 mile cool down (2 barefoot)
19 miles total

Overall very happy with effort and results. Beautiful, fun run. I fit it in between college fairs, mid-day before a night fair I had scheduled. Thus, no shower. I wonder if anyone noticed....

Wash 14/52 Upper Ridge (again)

New Record - (by only a second) - 9:58.

I was hurting from the prior week. Slacking on the Wash WOs, I need to do two this week as I did not do one last week. Also, yes, Upper Ridge every time is boring.

The Week 9/20-9/26

101 miles!

Great week. Felt great everyday... when I didn't feel great, I just ran until I did.

SUNDAY: Lone Gull 13 miles, 32:55 10k

MONDAY: 18 miles (3 barefoot)

TUESDAY: 12 miles (easy)

WEDNESDAY: 21 miles WO: 4 miles tempo, (sub 6), 16*100 sprints barefoot on astro turf

THURSDAY: am, 7 miles, pm 9 miles (2 barefoot)

FRIDAY: 7 miles (easy)

SATURDAY 14 miles, (last two miles Sub 5:30)

Happy with the week for mileage and difficulty considering how busy I was... Travelled all week in Manhattan and the Bronx, then went to Amherst, then Bristol RI for a wedding, then back to Amherst and NY for this week. Phew! Mission accomplished, somehow.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Lone Gull 10k 9/20

32:55 for 10k. Results below. CMS pulled through by a few seconds to get 5th ahead of Greater Boston. Thanks to Double J for telling me to run faster at mile 4. (Very helpful). I was happy with the race and effort. Last Grand Prix race is the Bay State Marathon. I'm thinking of running it, but doubt I could muster a performance to help the team.

Last week's results, a few good workouts, good mileage. 9/13/09 - 9/19/09: R86/1LIFT.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

WASH 13/52, Bear Mountain, NY

Randomly went to Bear Mountain park in NY, (I'm on the road for my job, UMass Admissions) and ran up the mountain. I've been feeling sick all week, so didn't know how far I would make it, but after a few miles I felt okay and decided to do a warm-up up and then down the mountain and then run it again at tempo pace for the WASH workout. After 3 miles and still not reaching the top I realized this idea probably wouldn't workout. It was fine though, as I made sure the "warm-up" hurt a lot. Also, to top off the day I did repeat 600s barefoot on the fields of the park below after the run down.

Total run: 14 miles
Elevation: 1300 feet
Ascent: 1135 feet
Average Grade: 4.5%

Here's the route, not bad off a whim. Beautiful view at the top. I could see the city.

Ollie Road Race and Josh Billings (WASH 12/52)

Back to back races this past week. - Ollie 5 mile Road Race (9/12) and the Josh Billings Run-a-Ground (9/13), a bike, canoe/kayak, 6-mile relay race. I ran the 6 mile leg. As did pal Andy, who also did the Ollie the day before.

Good overall week - 9/6 - 9/12: R83/B50/S1000 meters

I squeaked in a swim and even a track workout... in an attempt to copy Keenans Justin and Andy's week workout I did 8*400 with 200 rest followed by 8*200 with 200 rest. It was ugly, 70-72 for the 400s and 31-33 for the 200s. First speed in a LONG time. Also, I believe only a month ago I was having trouble running 30 miles a week. So overall, I was happy.

Results for Ollie below. Got 50th, which frankly, is pretty bad, but I felt great, just couldn't run any faster. Very strong, no speed is the conclusion. (Ollie was only 4.9 by the way).

The Josh results below. I felt strong again and a little faster than the day before. It's a very hilly course so I counted it as the prior week's WASH run, which basically meant that I had extra incentive to kill myself on the hills, which worked well. Our team got 6th overall, Andy's team was 5th. I had the 2nd fastest run time in 33:02, behind Andy's 32:32. Good day.

Finishing the Josh

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

WASH 11/52 - Mt. Greylock (+week)

SUNDAY: 18 mile run (Mt Wash. Trainer)

In Pittsfield for James Taylor concert Saturday. Sunday woke up and decided to spend the day running Mt. Greylock.

Total ascent in 8 miles = 1732 feet
Max elevation: 3488 feet (It was a beautiful day, beautiful at the top, great fun the whole way).
VC to Summit time: 61:20
Down: 53:58

Overall run with warm-ups and cool downs 18 miles in 2:06. Great way to spend a Sunday. It was easier than I thought. Next time I'll just run it faster.

MONDAY: 8 mile run, 34 mile bike, 4 mile run (2 barefoot)

TUESDAY: 11 mile run (3 barefoot)

WEDNESDAY 23 mile bike, 14 mile run (WO w/ Andy)

Randomly Andy emailed me to see if I wanted to do a workout (apparently his normal Keene Wed workout partner had to bail - Thanks Justin!) So Andy traveled down to Amherst to do some South West 1000 meter repeats. It was supposed to be my easy day...

Me: 3:05, 3:05, 3:07, 3:04, 3:04, 3:03.
Andy: 3:05, 3:05, 3:00, 3:05, 3:01, 2:58.

Andy looked great and was very happy, as was I. Also, I believe the 1000s were two seconds longer than we usually do them, so it was a good day - 1st time we did more than 5 SW 1000s since UM years. Elevation profile available below. It's a perfect grade for a nasty workout. Once you start to really hurt at the top of the hill, it's a slight downhill until the end that forces you to run faster than you A) think you can, and B) want to. Good stuff. "South West" is the name of the living area at UMass that we run around.

Great week thus far R55/B57. I'm going to probably take it easy tomorrow... I'm still injured!!!

UPDATE 9/6/9:

THURSDAY: Bike 34 miles, run 6 (2 barefoot)

FRIDAY: Run 10 miles (AM), Run 7 miles (PM) (3 barefoot)

SATURDAY: Bike 46 miles.

The Week: 8/30-9/5: R78/B138.

One of best weeks in a long time... I felt amazing except for Saturday when I went for a hard bike ride with no food or water in me. I basically crashed the rest of the day. Next week Ollie Road Race. I'd like to do another 70 if possible.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 10/52, Upper Ridge 5!

Killed it.

Start to top - 22:42
Base to top - NEW RECORD - 9:59
Overall run - 10 miles in 1:02:29

I needed to kill it as I did it on my... eh-hem "hour" long lunch break.

After work I did 8 miles.
3 mile warm-up
5*800 w/1 min rest in between reps
Afterwards I did a 2 mile cool down w/barefoot running, which I've been getting back into. These 800s hurt as the route has a some hills and the rest was short... also I'm out of shape, also the 10 miler earlier in the day.

Thus far with two days left in the week I'm at 85 miles on the bike, 56 running.
UPDATE: The week: 8/23 - 8/29: B115/R61. Could have run more, but didn't want to push-it too much. I'm still injured! Good week. Feel great.

The 800 route: (It looks good in hybrid mode)

Mount Washington Trainer 9/52 Upper Ridge AGAIN (#4)

Start to top - 22:56
Base to top - NEW RECORD - 10:21
Overall run - 1:07:18

This one hurt like hell. It was good.

The week: B195/R48

hardest running week in a long time - 3 10 mile+ days. Also, 80 mile bike ride in which I nearly passed out on. I did it with Jon and Andy. We averaged 20mph. I did some decent pulling.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 8/52, The Bobsled

Called the bobsled because you basically run up, then bobsled down for five miles. Really fun run. Also ran really slow this week: 1:18:35 for ten miles.

Overall Week: 8/9 - 8/15: B92/R39

Pretty easy, but I did two running workouts and one very tough bike ride. The BOF killed me the week before and I took awhile to get going.

Mount Washington Trainer 7/52, Bridge of Flowers 10k

First race in awhile. I give myself a C. All the biking did not pay off as I hoped it would.

The Week 8/2 - 8/8: 226B (5 days!)/40R

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 6/52, Roland Park Hill Repeats

Went to Center Ossipee NH to meet JB and family on vacation at Terrace "The Greatest Place in the World" Pines campground. An injury developed over the course of the week in which I felt I had either a punctured lung, cracked rib or some sort of inner muscle pull. It was probably the latter as I feel pretty much 100% right now, but at the time I couldn't do anything without a debilitating pain in my right side. It still hurt on Friday but seemed to be subsiding so I went out to keep the Mt Washington Training streak alive.

Ended up running a total of 12 miles with 3* Roland Park Rd Hill repeats. Felt awesome. I'm getting in shape.

1 Repeat = .75 miles, 270 foot ascent, average grade of 7.5%
Rest = jog down, (about 8 minutes).

Repeat 1 = 5:43
Repeat 2 = 5:22
Repeat 3 = 5:02

The week was pretty low overall, but I mostly blame the injury. Next week I've got The Bridge of Flowers Road Race. Still not doing much running, so the results should be interesting.

7/26 - 8/1: R32/B100

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 5/52, Town-LIne Hill Tempo: Pelham to Shutesbury

Very Sore from tough week.

Pelham town-line to Shutesbury town-line: 26:11, 4.25 miles
Overall run: 11.6 miles in 1:22:14
Ascent: 194-1060 feet.

Ran overall pretty slow. Also probably needed a better warm-up before the tempo, but I'll have more goes at it, so we'll see.

The Week 7/19-7/25: B253/R32/S2. Awesome week, including some of the toughest rides I've ever done...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Boy's Weekend: The blister!

PS: Each "Boy's Weekend" has left me injured.

2007: Andy ran me over with his boat. The propeller scarred and maimed my left leg. Jury is still out whether it was intentional or not.

2008: I pathetically pulled my hamstring attempting to wake board. The injury persists to this day.

2009: This year, results below. Not too bad considering the precedent. I would have run a faster tempo if the irritation on the back of my heel stopped. It just got worse.

Mount Washington Trainer 4/52, H Rd. Acton ME tempo

Went to Andy's summer house in Maine for third Annual "Boy's Weekend." Also in attendance Jon "Asleep on the boat" Korhonen, John "That wasn't my thumb" Jacobson, Joey "Tramp Stamp" Bakasya and Kyle "River Otter" Murphy.

Fun time had by all. On Saturday Andy and I did an out and back tempo - to the end of H Rd, 4.5 miles (hilly) and back 4.5 miles (still hilly).

It was my first real fast paced tempo since April.

Out (warm up): 35:57
Back (tempo): 27:47

The route with elevation:

Also did a 34 mile bike ride. Also hilly:

Overall down week - after three very tough weeks. The down week was not intended, but I crashed mid-week and thought it was about time for a rest.

7/12/2009 - 7/18/2009: B143/R32/S.5

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 3/52, Upper Ridge 3

Should be last Upper Ridge for awhile. Great overall week. Also, saw the Dr. Paul Farmer of foot-care, Dr Louis DeCaro, who explained all my foot woes, discovered they were not just connected to my foot but, in great sing-song fashion, that the "foot bone connected to my...." well, I have displaced hips too, which puts my stride on a further disadvantaged/unnatural level. The next day he got me in to see his physical therapist. After some adjustments (more to come in the future) I ran today and felt as good as I can remember. Which has something to do with the adjustments and also something to do with the fact that I'm getting in shape.

Salem to the top: 24:06
Base to top: 10:54
Overall run: 10 miles in 1:09:44

Also, I've resolved (since Washington) to work out at a minimum of 3 hours a day. "Work out" includes any combination of running, biking, swimming and focused stretching/lifting/core-work. While a few days this week I didn't reach the 3-hour goal, the days I did were 5+.

Website for Dr. DeCaro is below. Seriously, great guy. When I came in for my "gait clinic," not only did they film my stride on a treadmill, trace both my feet, do castings and multiple examinations with a team of specialists, but DeCaro himself had found an article in the New York Times that morning which he put in my file to be given to me when I came in. It was about a crazy runner. He was super pumped for me to read it.

The week 7/5 - 7/11: R33/B242/S1.8k

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 2/52, Upper Ridge 2

Second week of Washington training of 52 weeks. Did Upper Ridge again on the Holiday - the 4th, overall very sore from tough week.

Salem to the top: 25:41
Base to top: 12:18
Overall run: 10 miles, 1:13:16

I also biked to Pittsfield. It was mostly up-hill, 51 miles:

The week 6/28-7/4: R40/B237

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Mount Washington Trainer 1/52, Upper Ridge 1

I've resolved to do 1 Mount Washington training run/work-out a week until Mount Washington 2010. Still sore from the mountain last week I did Upper Ridge/Mt Orient training run Saturday, 6/27.

Salem to the top: 26:54. Base to top: 13:43. Overall run (upper ridge - middle ridge and back) 10 miles in 1:14:20.

Later in the day I did a 45 mile bike ride. Average 18.7 mph.

The week: R24/B218/S.5

Saturday, June 27, 2009

2009 Mount Washington Results

Finished 26th overall (25th men) my best finish thus far. Not a bad day considering the lack of running leading up to the race. Due to injury, in the two months before the race I was only able to run a total of 100 miles, but I biked over 1,000.

2007 Results: 29th - 1:15:57
2008 Results: 27th - 1:08:05
2009 Results: 26th - 1:11:47

Finishing the race - 22% grade incline - compliments Kevin Tilton.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

2009 Mount Washington Training

Injured: 4/14, inflamed ligaments in my right foot.
5/3-5/9: Bike 62 miles/Run 5/LIFT
5/10-5/16: Bike 88 miles/Run 18 miles/LIFT
5/17-5/23: Bike 173/Run 18 miles
5/24-5/30: Bike 72 miles/Run 22 miles
5/31-6/6: Bike 310 miles/Run 12 miles
6/7-6/13: Bike 261 miles/Run 25 miles

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

"Work could cure almost anything, I believed then, and I believe now."

-From old EH, A Moveable Feast

Above quote proves true again. Injured today after two great weeks. Instead spent the day focused on what work remained: Read MLK Letters from Birmingham Jail, ate well (healthily), played guitar and got some stretching in with the hope of being positive to run tomorrow.

Some of my favorite quotes from MLK below. 

"Socrates felt that is was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half-truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal."

"Lamentably, it is an historical fact that privileged groups seldom give up their privileges voluntarily."

"We must use time creatively, in the knowledge that the time is always ripe to do right."

"There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love."

Saturday, April 4, 2009

South West 1000s

5 * 1000s around UMass South West living area.
1st 400 = flat
2nd 200 = steep uphill
3rd 400 = slight downhill
Rest = 3 minutes jog back to start
Results: 3:09, 3:03, 2:58, 2:58, 2:53.

Did it at 8am with Andy and Jon. Good Workout. Jon finished a few seconds ahead on each one. Andy was a consistent 3:00-3:04. Revelation of run: After the 5 mile warm-up felt horrendous. Thought that I ought to walk home - really almost did, this despite the fact that through my years of accumulated running wisdom I knew some of the best workouts and races come after moments of this (almost literally) debilitating doubt, what Coach O'Brien would call "the demons." Still though, planned to walk back to bed, depressingly. Then I did a stride. Felt okay, which equaled a glimmer of hope. So I did the workout. In sum: It is still about how you feel. Do what you need to do to feel good.  

Sunday, March 1, 2009


"I told him of my fear of losing control of my destiny, how, because I had camouflaged myself so well, I seemed now to be shaped and directed too much by the needs of others. How the power of one within me was being dissipated even though their purposes for me were not corrupted or ill-intentioned. On the contrary, their deeds came swaddled in the innocence of love. I was becoming powerless as those around me plundered my spirit with the gifts of themselves... It was time to slough the mottled and cunningly contrived outer skin and emerge as myself, to face risk or exposure, to regain the power of one. I had reached the point where to find myself was essential."

-More from THE POWER OF ONE, finished a few days ago.

I wrote - if I recall correctly - that whatever running pursuits I have I have because, partly, "I have nothing better to do."

Well, we'll see if that's true.

Starting Season 2 this week. The first ended successfully: I ran for three months, built up training, stayed healthy and ran a PR in the mile: 4:17.57. I said afterwards if I ran any slower I would have dubbed the season a failure.

But I didn't run any slower.


Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Cactus

"God and I have no quarrels, madame. The almighty conceived the cactus plant. If God would choose a plant to represent him, I think he would choose of all plants the cactus. The cactus has all the blessings he tried, but mostly failed, to give man. Let me tell you how. It has humility, but is not submissive. It grows where no other plant will grow. It does not complain when the sun bakes it back or the wind tears it from the cliff or drowns it in the dry sand of the desert or when it is thirsty. When the rains come it stores water for the hard times to come. In good times and in bad it will still flower. It protects itself against danger, but harms no other plant. It adapts perfectly to almost any environment. It has patience and enjoys solitude. In Mexico there is a cactus that flowers once every hundred years and at night. This is saintliness of an extraordinary kind, would you not agree? The cactus has properties that heal the wounds of men and from it come potions that can make man touch the face of God or stare into the mouth of hell. It is the plant of patience and solitude, love and madness, ugliness and beauty, toughness and gentleness. Of all plants, surely God made the cactus in his own image? It has my enduring respect and is my passion."
-Professor von Vollensteen, from THE POWER OF ONE.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Apology # 1

Notice the "#1." That means that after most posts (if not all) I will probably feel the need to apologize.

This one is for saying that The CMS Racing Team "doesn't really care who shows up to race," etc, etc.

Now that is not exactly true. We do care. We'd rather have more than less, certainly. But perhaps the one condition to be on our team, unspoken, albeit - (and all the better for it!) - is that we all love running. Which. We. Do. So we are all obviously going to attend every race we can.

It's great to be on a team with a bunch of guys who just love running. That's why we are here. And that, I suppose, is another reason for this blog. Something to do with the love of running.

It's kind of metaphorical.


"I'm here, I suppose, to defend the titled conceit and all those like it."

I put the above in the "about me" section, as, I suppose, an explanation for why this blog exists. Actually, it exist because I am part of the CMS (Central Mass Striders) racing team and one of our teammates - a very devoted, and admirable Jim Johnson - was kind enough to create a blog for our team. We are a big running club, while the Men's Racing team, is rather small in comparison to all the mothers and fathers and retired runners, smokers, walkers, etc who make up the CMS "club." I joined the team after college because my good friend (and literally - more than once - life-saving hero) Andrew "The Hammer" McCarron told me to join.

The racing team is a very unobtrusive team. Although we compete to win (mostly in the New England Gran Prix Mountain, Cross Country and Road Series - and win often enough, we do)... (phew!) BUT, even though we compete and win, the team doesn't really care who shows up to race. Very low commitment. Which, I suppose - and those who know me best will agree (Hi Mom!, Hi JK!) - is a rather smooth arrangement for myself, said obsessive self-destructive runner.

Well, I'm still self destructive. But for the past year or so, since multiple running revelations, of them that running is undefeatable and that life is not... well, since then I've been running about average, rather than a complete failure. (See UMass of Amherst running profile: Matthew Clark... well, that's not completely fair, I had a few good relays).

I'm self destructive but I am running fast.

It's time to take on the above conceit. Literally, that is. I've got nothing better to do with my life. I'd like to whisk by some Olympic milers, (maybe not in street clothes), but whisk by them nonetheless. I'd like to be an Olympic miler.

I've got less than four years.


PS: I never answered my original thought (I'm not really a good writer)... Jim Johnson created a CMS Men's Racing Team Blog (see and in order for me to post there I need my own blog account too. Thus "Fastest Boy Runner" etc, etc. Thanks Jim!